Our instructors are dedicated to meeting students at their level and creating a safe learning environment for both ends of the leash. 

Brad Dennis

Brad Dennis has over 30 years of experience in search and rescue and 22 years as a K-9 handler. He is currently working his 4th HRD K- 9, Grace, a labrador retriever. Brad is the National Search Director for the KlaasKIDS Foundation’ Search Center for Missing & Trafficked Children. He managed the community- assisted search effort following the abduction of 12-year-old Polly Hannah Klaas in 1993 from Petaluma, Ca.; which has become the model for child abduction search strategies.

He has managed search efforts for over 300 missing/abducted children around the country. He travels extensively throughout the United States providing dynamic and relevant instruction concerning search and rescue operations, advocacy to families of missing children, child abduction search management, sex trafficking of minors and serves as “Evaluator” for the National Association of Search and Rescue (NASAR).


He has been instrumental in the rescue of numerous children from sex trafficking and the intelligence he has gathered has assisted in taking down several child prostitution rings. His rescue efforts for missing children have been chronicled on CNN, The Early Show, The Today Show, Dateline, MSNBC, and 48 Hours. He has been awarded the Commissioner’s Award from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the prestigious Justice Award from the Foundation for Improvement of Justice for his efforts to locate missing children. 


Brad is the owner of Threshold Education. This veteran owned training and consulting team conducts training scenarios to prepare responders for realistic deployment operations. Brad is a retired Cryptologic Master Chief Petty Officer, US Navy, and is highly decorated for his counterterrorism work with the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC). He also proudly serves as the Pastor of Eden Fellowship Church located in Pensacola, Florida.

Greg Cole

Greg Cole began his law enforcement and dog training career upon joining the United States Air Force in 1976. A graduate of the DOD Dog Training Center in 1977, he subsequently served as a security policeman and K9 handler at Loring Air Force Base, 42 Bomb Wing, Strategic Air Command. He handled 3 different patrol dogs and gained his first experiences with narcotics and explosive detection dogs. After working a year as the dog trainer at Thunder Bay Inc. in Clearwater, Florida, he and his family moved to Gulf County Florida in 1984.


In 1985 he trained and handled the county’s first police dog in the fields of patrol, tracking, area search, evidence recovery, building search, and narcotics detection, thus establishing the county’s first K9 unit. 


As the K9 trainer and supervisor he maintained charge of a six dog team unit and trained a total of fifteen K9 teams for the Department. His dog teams maintained state and national standards in fields spanning patrol, tracking, building and area search, article search/evidence recovery, vehicle search, narcotics and human remains detection. All his K9 teams maintained certifications through organizations such as the United States Police Canine Association (USPCA), the North American Police Work Dog Association (NAPWDA), and the National Narcotics Detector Dog Association (NNDDA). Greg was also called upon to assist in the training of many other local and state agencies’ K9 units and is a Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) K9 Subject Matter Expert (SME). He also serves as the police K9 operations trainer and adviser for the Gulf Coast State College Criminal Justice program.


Greg retired his law enforcement commission in 2013. Establishing J-Max K9 Training and Services, Greg continues services to the Gulf County Sheriff’s Office as their K9 trainer and advisor.  He entered into the realm of search and rescue in 2005 training his 2 Labrador Retrievers as specialty human remains detection canines, working land and water. Serving the law enforcement and civilian communities, both dogs became known for their successes in the field.  In 2009, Greg and his dog Maximus were recognized for their performance in the field by the United States Army, while serving the military in the search for their missing in Iraq. Greg is a member of the KLaasKIDS Foundation Search Center for missing and trafficked children, serving as a K9 handler and K9 instructor. Greg continues to serve local, state, and national organizations as a K9 handler, instructor, and evaluator. He served as an instructor for the Western Carolina University (WCU) advanced cadaver dog program, and is an instructor with HRD Specialized K9 Training, established 2002.  Greg is also a K9 instructor/evaluator and serves on the board of advisors for the National Network of Canine Detection Services (NNCDS). Greg trained and is currently working his third labrador retriever, K9 Sloopy, as a specialty human remains detection K9 team, performing forensic recovery on land and water. He maintains current certifications with Sloopy through the National Narcotic Detector Dog Association (NNDDA) and the National Network of Canine Detection services (NNCDS).

Robin Greubel

Robin has been working in search and rescue since 2001. She's certified and deployed dogs in area search, wilderness HRD, disaster and disaster HRD. She responds to requests by various law enforcement agencies in and around the state of Iowa to aid in search management and to resolve cases with her canines. 

She is a Canine Search Specialist with Nebraska Task Force 1 and Iowa Task Force 1. She is also a FEMA, Alliance of Emergency Response Instructor and Examiner (AERIE) and NASAR instructor. She is a certifying official for FEMA, AERIE, NASAR and SARDUS. She serves as the Branch Manager for K9 Branch of AERIE. Robin also trains and handles explosive detection dogs and narcotics detection dogs.


Robin instructs throughout the nation in diverse specialties. By training the trainer/handler, she provides students with a deeper understanding of the behaviors they are trying to achieve. Robin’s focus remains on meeting the dog at its level, decoding animal perceptions and responses to stimuli. Her progressive, research-based training translates theory into practice, empowering people to collaborate with their canine partners.


Robin holds a master of arts in community and regional planning and an MBA.  She is a certified career and executive coach. She serves as a subject matter expert for the AAFS Dogs and Sensors Consensus Body. 

Jennifer Hirakawa

Jennifer brings over 20 years of local, national, and international experience in canine training, canine program management, and canine behavior.


In May of 2012, Jennifer retired from the US Army Military Police Corps after 23 years of service with the rank of Master Sergeant (MSG). Jennifer’s military career had many postings and positions, including over six years as a canine handler/trainer in patrol, narcotics, and explosives detection. She deployed multiple times for both short and long deployments (IFOR, SFOR, OEF, and others). She successfully challenged the German National Dog Trainers Exam.


Jenn is the owner of Kawa Farms K9 Training. In 2012, she began training dogs and humans to help them form a better human-canine bond.  Jenn works with all different breeds and temperaments; she also trains many disciplines and actively completes behavior consultations. She trains Service Dogs, working odor detection dogs, and dual-purpose canines.


When Jenn launched into world of search and rescue, she interned with and trained under Robin Greubel, Lisa Higgins, Theresa McPherson, Brad Dennis, Greg Cole, and Paul Martin for 5 years, while training her own K9s in HRD and Wilderness Live Find.  Jenn is currently working K9 Moose in HRD, and K9 Gracie Bell in Wide Area, while training K9 Billie to follow when Moose retires. She is currently certified and has deployed dogs in wilderness HRD, responding to requests by various law enforcement agencies in and around the state of Iowa and has deployed with the Nebraska State Task Force.  She maintains current certifications with AERIE and SARDUS. Jennifer serves as an instructor with K9Sensus teaching the human end of the leash and canine behavior in the cadaver dog program. 


Jenn is an Examiner/Instructor with the Alliance for Emergency Response Examiners (AERIE) for the following disciplines: Instructor – SARAware Course for Student that are beginning their career in Search and Rescue, Instructor – SAR Responder Course for Student certification as a Ground Searcher, Instructor for Search Management, Examiner and Mentor for K9 -- Land HRD, Examiner and Mentor for K9 – Wide Area Search.  With National Network of Canine Detection Services (NNCDS) she works as an Instructor and Evaluator for the following disciplines: K9 – Land HRD, K9 – Wide Area Search,  K9 Water HRD


Jennifer holds memberships in: National Police Canine Association (NPCA), Association of Professional Dog Trainers (APDT: Premier Member), American Kennel Club (AKC): Trainer and Evaluator for All Canine Good Citizen exams, Association of Professional Dog trainers (ADPT) C.L.A.S.S. Trainer and Evaluator, and The International Association of Animal Behavioral Consultants: Supporting Member (IAABC). Jennifer is also a Life Member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), The Disabled America Veterans (DAV), United States Army Military Police Regimental Association, and many other veterans’ groups.